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Owen Suskind, The Moviegoer

You have to read this. You have to. It’s a long story in the New York Times Magazine, in which Ron Suskind, the writer, discovers a way to reach his profoundly autistic son, Owen: through Disney movies. I won’t excerpt the piece because the way it unfolds has everything to do with its shock and wonder. But you have to read it. Here’s a tiny piece:

As the session ends, Griffin pulls me aside. “Autistic kids like Owen are not supposed to do that,” he says. “This is getting weird in a very good way.”

In Walker Percy’s novel The Moviegoer, protagonist Binx Bolling uses his deep fascination with films to navigate the real world. This is understood to be a deficit, a weakness, a negative buffer between Binx and reality. But in Owen’s case, watching Disney movies is his bridge to reality. This really is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever read. Read it now!

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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